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Drinking: Tea :tea:
Watching: Wolf Among Us Stuff:iconfatlaplz:

Reading: Homework/study notes. :ohnoes:
Listening to: Pop Music :iconlardgrinwooplz:

I have no idea how fast everything has become. Still super-busy, still super-internet bad. Like I said before, I just find background art and fooling around a bit less of an immediate thing than all my work. But even if I'm not replying right away or around much, I want all the people who have been leaving favorites to know I appreciate every one.

In the meantime, lookit what I found:

:iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz:
:iconlaplz: 

:iconidontthinksobetchplz:

:iconthefonzplz: :icongoofygrinplz:

Ratchet and Clank Stamp by Ben-Anderson
.:Ratchet and Clank stamp 4:. by dannyphantom300
Land before time stamp by Sony-ShockStamp: Bravestarr by Gatekat Cragmite OC Support by WolfzenStamp - Dallas and Juanita by Lurking-Leanne
Cragmite Empire Stamp by HlTLER
Aaaahhh What by MiharuWatanabeI love ReBoot by thebadkittyCrash Bandicoot stamp by RobinBaxterButt


Dr. N. Tropy Stamp by xSweetSlayerxSly 4 stamp~ The Ancestors by SeeraphineClassic Spyro Stamp by RadSpyroN.Brio Stamp by angelblood

Activity


Lifeforce Chapter 48

"How often it is that the angry man rages denial of what his inner self is telling him."

Frank Herbert

Man from Mars

Tachyon returned to the Battle Ship, quiet and brooding – The Loki had not seen him in such a state in any of the months they'd known each other. And, after what he'd heard of the cragmite's temper from others, he was sure it wasn't natural. The minions had no idea, or if they did they weren't telling him what had occurred, other than Tachyon had confronted the lombax and the tin can – and they escaped.

He sat down on his throne. He'd gone back to smaller lab where no minions where fluttering around; he'd toned down the lights, letting the cool blue of the monitors be the only source of it. It was reminiscent of his homeworld's habitat – always dark, always lit by various small lights here and there. He found it a little relaxing.

After the fiasco with Qwark he wanted some time alone. The buffoon had spun off somewhere, and they hadn't bothered going after him. The explosion in the Repair Station had been taken care of and the engines where working again. It seemed things had calmed down at long last.

Yet, he had the nagging feeling that he was forgetting something. Frowning, he rubbed his forehead, peering around at the monitors. Ah, yes – Nefarious. Probably still hanging by the chain over a vat of acid; if the jostling from the explosion had spilled any on him. Sighing, The Loki reached over and pressed a command button, transferring the cameras to the room in question.

Nefarious was gone. The Loki snapped up to attention, on his feet. "What?!" He sent a command to move the camera, panning it around – the chain had been lowered, in no way damaged – someone had let him out. Lawrence? No, he'd dumped that butler in the cell block somewhere.

Snarling, The Loki pressed down the button to activate the intercom speaker, "Minions! That so-called 'Dr Nefarious' has escaped! Track him down and drag him back here!"

"Ooooh, The only thing that'll be dragged is your face across the floor!"

The Loki turned just in time to catch a glimpse of Nefarious aiming a blaster his way – before it blasted clean into his chest, sending him flying off his throne and to the floor. He heard the infernal stack of metal cackling, and the inferior body he'd possessed was barely holding onto consciousness.

Drat this ridiculous body...

He forced his eyes open and got to his feet, slowly, hearing the robot storm over to the control panel, past him – oddly enough. Why not kill him now?

"You surprise me...your judgement is far more like that sidekicks than I thought." The Loki sneered. Nefarious's head snapped back to him and he took one step towards him – before someone else stepped between them.

The Loki stopped and for a second, blinked. The armoured lombax was – what?!

"What is this?" He growled at the robot, ignoring the masked face of the lombax... Nefarious shrugged,

"Ah, crazy little furball decided it would be better to set me free than let you have more control over this operation." (The Loki noticed the lombax turned his head towards him quickly, as if in surprise)

"Oh, really." The Loki said, regaining his composure. He knew in his position, with two armed enemies and him without his throne, that pressing Nefarious's bottoms was a bad idea. But still.

"I suppose being the 'hero' suits you now, after that little fiasco on Magnus." He said dryly, dusting himself off. "It's the only real thing you succeeded in."

Nefarious turned on his heel and lunged – only for the metal-covered lombax to seize him around the waist and, with surprising strength, wrench him back. The Loki raised a brow at the lombax, wondering why in the world he would wish to restrain the robot from killing him. The lombax made no move to comment.

Said lombax flung Nefarious backwards onto the ground. The doctor spluttered, "You – let me tear him apart, runt, he's the bigger problem here!"

The lombax simply shook his head down at Nefarious and pointed at the control panel. Nefarious stood, shoving him aside. "Fine! But after this I'm killing him."

"What are you up to?" The Loki sneered, ever-so-slightly beginning to inch back towards his throne and the blaster hidden within it. He noted the lombax's head was turned towards him, but he – if it was indeed male – made no move to stop him. Another odd strait. That and the lack of speaking – was it possible he was brain damaged or something?

"Oh, just re-wiring the system to my liking. I'm not leaving here without my assets, and I'm certainly not letting YOU use them any longer!" Nefarious snapped, his back still to the Loki as he continued typing various commands into the Battle Ship's interface.

"Assets? Most of the ones in use belong to me and the cragmite. The whole point of the partnership was that you needed resources for your 'revenge'." The Loki said, glaring at the lombax as its masked head followed him like a lock-on camera.

The lombax reached behind his back and pulled out a blaster – The Loki stiffened, and only scowled the more. The blaster – or whatever it was – had an odd, thin shape; rectangular and plain looking. It had a trigger and a handle, and a barrel, but not much else.

"An odd design." He noted cordially, quirking a brow up at the lombax, "Though then again, lombaxes have and always will be odd."

"Don't try getting a rise out of that one, it won't work." Nefarious called over his shoulder, "I tried. I think he's crazier than I am."

"I wouldn't wager that." The Loki replied, folding his arms and glancing around for some means of gaining the upper hand again.

The lombax looked at Nefarious, who was still glued to the computer screen. The Loki scowled and resumed looking around the room – only to hear, faintly, a voice down the hall – Tachyon growling at a minion.

The lombax appeared not to have heard. Was he deaf? Nefarious was too far from the door to notice. The Loki couldn't help but smirk, placing his paws behind his back and calmly waiting. The lombax turned his head back to him. He was no psychic, but he got the notion the brat was glaring at him.

"Do not mind me." He crooned, tilting his head to the side. As expected, the lombax didn't reply, keeping his gun pointed at the cat's head.

The lombax' head tilted to the side ever so slightly. The Loki continued grinning at him, but not too much.

"Got it!" Nefarious cackled nearby, "My minions are back in my hand. They won't be looking at you two short-fries without shooting at your heads after this."

"Oh?" The Loki replied, not bothering to look at him.

At that moment, the door to the lab slid open and the arm of Tachyon's throne slid in like a cat's clawing at a mouse – and just barely missed the lombax. The masked furball had heard the whoosh of the door just in time to throw himself back, narrowly avoiding a bloody death.

Nefarious gave a yelp and leaped over the control panel; the lombax following suit – Tachyon's drophids poured in and open-fired.

The Loki sprinted across the floor and leapt onto the control panel, and back to his throne as Tachyon stormed in, looking rather unhinged.

"Having a rough evening?" The Loki called.

Tachyon glared at him viciously, "It is very tempting for me to unleash my drophids onto you as well. Do not push me." He looked away – his eyes locking on the fleeing Nefarious and lombax.

He fired a laser over the heads of the drophids; aiming for the feet of the fleeing two – but both Nefarious and the lombax jumped to avoid it in time. Tachyon gave an almost-yowl like yell of fury,

"Stop running, you cowardly scum!"

The lombax turned, his arm flexing as he lifted his hand – and made a very rude gesture with his fingers back at the cragmite. Tachyon, his fury an inferno by this point, seized one of the control panels with the arm of his throne – and tore it from the floor. The Loki was too dumbstruck to stop him, and watched in alarm as he tossed the heavy ton of metal at the lombax.

The lombax threw himself back – but his arm was hit by the tumbling metal and an audible crack rang out – Tachyon gave a sickening grin of satisfaction as the man stumbled, disorientated. The drophids moved in – but then an arm reached out and grabbed the lombax, whisking him off the floor and through the air. Nefarious had just pulled him away.

"What?!" The Loki muttered – just as Nefarious gave a loud, ear-torturing whistle.

"MINIONS! Deal with these two short-fries!" He called at the top of his voice – and from the air vents burst dozens of Nefarious's minions. The Loki growled and rose higher into the air on his throne, signalling his own to attack – and Tachyon began advancing on the lombax and robot again.

"Neither of you are leaving this room alive." He seethed coldly.

"Throwing your lot in with the 'good guys' completely now, Nefarious?" The Loki called over the din, minions crashing into each other. Nefarious reached down, and in a very childish manner, threw a scrap of metal at him – missing badly.

"Oh shut up already, you sore Looser! I'm just taking advantage of this clearly dumb armour fan boy for the moment!" He folded his arms. Tachyon, however, was not in the mood for these antics. His throne leaped – and landed right in front of the two. Nefarious and the lombax backed up, precariously nearing the corner of the lab.

"Silence, you halfwit." Tachyon snapped, swiping at the robot with the throne's arm – which Nefarious ducked.

"You look moodier than usual. What happened? More lombaxes escaped your genocide?!"

The hand of the throne clenched into a fist and punched him directly in the jaw. The lombax watched, blankly, as Nefarious's head soared off his shoulders and smacked off the wall behind them. "...Get BENT."

The leg of the throne slammed down before the lombax. Tachyon was towering over him, saying nothing – the monologues and taunts where over. The lombax clenched his fists and leaped up at him, toting his odd-looking blaster in his still working arm. He fired; Tachyon ducked away to the side at the last second to avoid it. The throne's arm batted the lombax away, but he landed quiet nimbly nearby.

Nefarious's body wandering around looking for its head as they battled; Tachyon slashing at the lombax like an angry cat and said lombax dodging all the while. The Loki chortled.

"Over HERE, you twit!" Nefarious called to his body, but it still went the wrong way. Then, an idea came to him. A stupid, but perhaps needed idea.

"LAAAAAWRENCE!"

The butler peered into the chaotic lab through the side door. "Sir? I see you have returned to the 'ground' floor."

"Go and get the Orb of uuuh- " He thought quickly, "The Orb we used on the toaster back at the Great Clock! Scratch that, bring TEN!"

"Alrighty, sir..." Lawrence shuffled off. The Loki glared at Nefarious, or rather, his head.

"Just what are you up to?" He waved at some minions – to send them after Lawrence just in case.

"Oh nothing, just something to help me get back on my feet..." He cackled, his damaged eye lolling rather unpleasantly.

A flash lit up the hall the minions had flown down moments later. The Loki turned his head. "Minions?"

The lombax turned his head, as did Tachyon – momentarily halting their battle. Lawrence appeared, the minions having failed to stop him – holding a large box in his hands.

"Had to use one on the minions back there." He said plainly, shrugging – and he tossed the box into the room. Dozens of little metal orbs rolled out in every direction – and seconds later, before anyone could react, they burst with a golden field – which shocked all minions, all robots aside from Nefarious and his own robots. The Loki gave a slight gasp as his throne yell, shorting out – and his minions stiffened and fell to the floor like bugs hit by a very intense bugs spray.

Tachyon's throne went rigged and clumsy, seizing up as if ice was clogging the circuits. Giving a wobbling yelp, he and the hulking machine fell. The crash nearly knocked the lombax off his feet on impact.

"HAHAH!" Nefarious cackled from the floor, "Victory is mine!"

"Orbs of Immobilization." The Loki sneered, his head aching from the crash to the floor, "I suppose you do have a brain after all."

"Whatever. Lawrence, grab by head. Lombax, drag by body along with us, we don't have time to re-attach it here – and LAWRENCE!"

The butler halted, Nefarious's head now in his hands. Nefarious raised a brow. "Remember to pick up my laundry while we're on the way out."

The lombax turned his head, looking over at Tachyon. The cragmite was on his knees – or the peg-leg equivalent – and disorientated. His fists clenched and he began advancing towards the cragmite.

Footsteps began echoing from the hall. More drophids. Nefarious barked out,

"We don't have time to finish him off now!"

The lombax stiffened, looking between the cragmite and Nefarious – but in the end he decided against it and bolted after the robot and his butler, dragging the headless body of the doctor along with them.

The Loki sat up, rubbing his head, and stopped the lombax's odd, dropped blaster lying nearby.

"...Hmm..."

...

Ratchet hadn't had such a deep, dreamless sleep in ages. When he awoke he felt oddly refreshed, and didn't feel like a total zombie. He raised his head and glanced around. He was still in the ship, sitting one of the chairs. His body felt a little stiff. Clank was nearby, in his little box form and recharging. Cronk and Zephyr where snoozing in the pilot seats, as the ship was on auto-pilot.

The lombax turned his head and saw Trisby still at the back of the ship, glaring idly out of the window. He stared at her for a few minutes, trying to think if she should address her or not. He felt a little better after talking to Talwyn, so maybe...

Trisby looked at him, in a quick turn of the head, so sharp he almost jumped. "What is it, Ratchet?"

"...Forget it." He turned away on his seat, rubbing his stiff neck. He shouldn't have wasted the thought.

But then another thing came to mind, "It's like you have somethin' against Tal. You get all moody whenever we call her." He left out 'I' to avoid another scoff. Trisby rolled her eyes,

"Other than adding more brains to clue into this mess being a bad idea, I think it's dumb to have someone you swoon over in the picture too much. Especially when you're meant to be keeping alert."

"I didn't swoon." Ratchet said, feeling his cheeks burn under his fur.

"That kind of 'feelings' isn't good when you're trying to concentrate. Especially with the Lifeforce hovering around." Ratchet stiffened. There was finality to her tone, as if she was ending the conversation, but his mind had exploded with questions.

"...What do you mean?" He asked unevenly, turning in his seat to look at her. She glared at him.

"The last person who was all 'feely feely' around the lifeforce ended up having what looks like his whole mind poured into it. I just don't like the way it reacts."

Ratchet stared at her. Obviously she was talking about Ickabar...but he didn't understand...

"So you're saying it...likes...emotions?"

"It likes connections, I think. If it is a 'thing...'" Trisby stopped herself and turned away, "It's all theories of mine. But just to be safe, I'd keep a guard on your mind so you don't get pulled in a la-la land again."

Ratchet's temper flared. "I'm not weak."

"Then prove it." Trisby didn't turn back to him. Ratchet got the incentive that the conversation was over. He rubbed his face, sighing.

The control console began beeping. Cronk and Zephyr stirred and awakened; Cronk sliding off his seat in alarm. "Yah!"

Ratchet, ready for a conversation changer, darted off his seat to the console before either of the warbots got their bearings. They had reached the library closest to where Tachyon's forces where active – this had to be it. "We're here!"

"So it's time for some darn book browsin'?" Zephyr asked a little doubtfully. Ratchet grinned,

"Kinda, Zephyr – though we're gonna be quick about it. Tachyon's probably not far behind."

"If his brain has begun re-functioning..." Trisby crooned rather darkly. Ratchet didn't miss the look the now awake Clank sent her, but she ignored it.

"There's probably going to be some of his forces searching also. But perhaps we should try for a stealth mission if we are to acquire the book in one piece." Clank suggested. Ratchet's mind turned back to their last stealth mission – that ended in them fleeing as the armoured lombax blew up the Battleship's engine.

"Yeaah..." He drawled, "Though we'll still probably end up fighting our way out."

Cronk chortled from his pilot seat, "Well, rookies, guess we'll need to link ourselves up with GrummelNet and get us some ammo!"

"Finally..." Ratchet couldn't help but grin. Some more efficient weapons and ammo where all but welcome. "A bomb-glove or decoy glove could come in handy..."

"Eyes on the road." Trisby's voice cut in. All parties turned to the windshield.

Night had fallen over Cobalia; and the library, settled near a small village-like area that wasn't completely mopped by jungle, was surrounded by small, hovering crafts. He didn't know what they where, but they looked far too small to be ships.

"I'm putting up our cloaking device." Zephyr remarked, pressing a few keys, "but we'll have to land a little away from them weird floatin' things."

"They may be surveillance or security drones." Trisby commented, somehow on the control console now – Ratchet wondered if she's stealth-walked her way past them.

"We must act quickly and leave this place. Tachyon's forces are everywhere." Clank said. Ratchet, his eyes on the dark library below, nodded once.

...

The ship landed amongst the trees a few meters away from the village-like area beside the library. The library itself was built smooth and round, like a buried ball with various (unlit) windows. The stairway up to it was swamped with minions, and the little houses where locked up tight – Ratchet hoped that no residents remained in the area with Tachyon around.

Peering through the thick jungle leaves, Ratchet, Trisby and the three robots viewed the premises.

"I get the feeling they were expecting us." Ratchet said, trying to keep the mood light. Trisby sighed.

"Causing a diversion will lead them to believe we might be here too soon. We can't disturb the guards in any way."

Ratchet, who had readied his newly bought Decoy Glove, forced back a grumble. "So what's your bright idea of getting inside?"

"Ever seen those movies where security cameras are duped by looping footage?" Trisby asked, smirking over her shoulder at him. "The little hovering things you see around the building are all security drones. They're the real problem, not the minions. You fooled them by wearing one of them, remember?"

"So we hack into the cameras?" Clank interjected. Cronk frowned, chewing his metal lip,

"Hang on, don't that mean we hafta hack into all them drones?"

"No- they'll all be linked up to once source. I just have to find it...which means we'll have to sniff around this little area." Trisby, without warning, slipped from the cover of the leaves and quietly ran to the nearest villager house, ducking behind a stack of crates.

Ratchet saw her hand lift over the box and gesture at him to move, pointing towards another house. Ratchet sighed. "Guess we'll be checkin' out these old houses."

"Best not to grumble, sonny." Zephyr said wisely, "Years workin' with Miss Apogee made us realize that when a woman gives an order in a mission, it's best ta not question it."

...

Drinking: Tea :tea:
Watching: Wolf Among Us Stuff:iconfatlaplz:

Reading: Homework/study notes. :ohnoes:
Listening to: Pop Music :iconlardgrinwooplz:

I have no idea how fast everything has become. Still super-busy, still super-internet bad. Like I said before, I just find background art and fooling around a bit less of an immediate thing than all my work. But even if I'm not replying right away or around much, I want all the people who have been leaving favorites to know I appreciate every one.

In the meantime, lookit what I found:

:iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz::iconyaaayplz:
:iconlaplz: 

:iconidontthinksobetchplz:

:iconthefonzplz: :icongoofygrinplz:

Ratchet and Clank Stamp by Ben-Anderson
.:Ratchet and Clank stamp 4:. by dannyphantom300
Land before time stamp by Sony-ShockStamp: Bravestarr by Gatekat Cragmite OC Support by WolfzenStamp - Dallas and Juanita by Lurking-Leanne
Cragmite Empire Stamp by HlTLER
Aaaahhh What by MiharuWatanabeI love ReBoot by thebadkittyCrash Bandicoot stamp by RobinBaxterButt


Dr. N. Tropy Stamp by xSweetSlayerxSly 4 stamp~ The Ancestors by SeeraphineClassic Spyro Stamp by RadSpyroN.Brio Stamp by angelblood
Back of Leaflet/Poster by What-if-Writer
Back of Leaflet/Poster
I dunno if the colours go, but oh well. Wanna know what this is, look at the previous poster - this is basically a promotional leaflet without all the text.
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Poster Design - No Writing by What-if-Writer
Poster Design - No Writing
This is a college piece; its the unfinished version without all the info. Didn't expect to see any art, did you? :lol: Its the exception because this is college stuff. No, its not art college, but its to do with Public Relations and promotion, so on so forth. I'll be uploading the 'back' of it too. The way this works is that you have a big poster, then usually you have a little table underneath with a small leaflet version with the front just being a smaller version of the poster, and more info on the back.
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Lifeforce Chapter 47

"Sooner or later in life, we will all take our own turn being in the position we once had someone else in."
Ashly Lorenzana

A House Divided

Qwark's vessel gave a sharp, yet clumsy, turn, narrowly missing the fiery engines. A split second too late and he'd have been vaporised. The Loki watched this on the screen with growing annoyance. Why did the universe insist on keeping the most irritating lifeforms it had alive?

"Take him down. The simpleton is no use as a prisoner." The Loki said, barely glancing at the minion he was talking to. It hurried off to spread the command. He'd cut the cragmite off, thinking Qwark perhaps brought something more dangerous with him, but it was clear now that he was on his own.

The minions jumped as a shadow ran across the cockpit. The Loki looked away from the screen and saw the green buffoon, pressed up again the glass of his ship yet again, this time mere inches away from the Battleship's large front window. The Loki raised a brow.

"This is ridiculous."

The ship jolted without warning. Qwark bounced off the glass, his ship being pinged away like a tennis ball. The Loki turned to the control panel beside him to see what was going on – something had exploded down in the minion repair station. He groaned, heavily.

He hated having to do everything.

...

The armoured lombax seized Nefarious by the wrist and began sprinting. Now, being tugged along by someone who doesn't even reach your hip in height can result in only one thing; tripping up and being dragged along like an oversized ragdoll.

"OW! Hold it, you twit –"Nefarious barked, before the lombax tugged him again pulling him from the acid chamber and into the hall. He reached into his pocket and pulled out what clearly was some kind of grenade – and tossed it at some minions that had the misfortune to fly around the corner.

Nefarious gave a screech as the metal-covered furball pulled on his arm again, giving him no time to get out his feet, and seconds later he found himself being dragged head-first into an air-vent, his tall head smacking painfully against the roof of the narrow passage.

"Ow! Are you trying to kill me?!" The robot snapped. Once again he was ignored and pulled by the annoyingly strong-gripped rodent through the vent. The lombax was scrambling, looking almost frantic, but not a sound came from him. Nefarious didn't know what possessed the creature to help him, but if he thought he was going to get something in return he was surely mistaken –

Nefarious jammed his feet down to stop the lombax pulling him. He'd just seen something as they passed another vent opening – through the bars he could see the Loki had left the cockpit and was overlooking the minion repair station – still on his wretched throne. The lombax continued trying to tug on him, but Nefarious gripped the bars of the vent cap to stop him.

"...Qwark is aimlessly chasing his own jet trial outside the ship, he is no problem – "The Loki snapped at a communicator in his hand, "It is of no importance now. He did no damage."

"The lombax has rejoined his friends." Tachyon hissed back, unseen but easily recognisable, "I do not want that oaf appearing from nowhere to come to their rescue." The Loki rolled his eyes.

"You should make up your mind about what you want to do. Do you wish to kill the lombax and his tin can now, or is there still something you want them to do?"

"We do not need the decoy plan anymore. It is too risky." Tachyon growled, "I want something, yes, but I will have it before this day is done and the lombax's head on a platter along with it."

"What exactly has gotten to you?" The Loki Master said, sounding almost like a moaning adolescent. Nefarious' brow twitched in interest.

"Nothing of your concern, rodent. Just get the ship fixed and deal with Qwark." Tachyon hung up. The Loki grumbled and barked a few commands at the minions nearby. Nefarious rubbed his chin.

"Well, well...Looks like the bug's been irked by something, but what...?"

The lombax began tugging on his arm again. Nefarious shoved him back, "Alright, you pest! But this is only because I have no other option, not because we're on the same 'side'!"

The armoured lombax shrugged and continued moving down the air-vent. Nefarious followed him, cursing under his breath.

...

It felt like an eternity had passed when Ratchet finally finished speaking. At first they'd walked while he spoke, Clank chiming in with questions – who was who, whose perspective did he 'see' through in these 'visions' purely factual – but his questions, and the walking, ended as the story of Ickabar and his friend strung itself together.

Clank remembered the sinking, paradox-like jam in his mind that occurred when Ace Hardlight, many years ago, had gloated into his face about how he killed others for fun – other heroes, revoking everything he once believed and fought for, and truly liking every moment. Clank hadn't understood and supposed he never would – evil existed, and it overpowered logic. It was beyond his understanding.

Ratchet was clearly affected by what he'd seen. Clank had had visions before, but none as horrible as the ones he described – in detail. Ratchet avoided his eye when talking towards the end, and it made Clank feel...odd. Sad in a way, but he didn't like being apart from his friend like this. It couldn't be helped, logically; his friend had gone through an ordeal...

But he'd separated from him for two years and they'd repaired that bond...

Clank pushed that thought aside. He focused on the story – the history – he'd just heard. He lifted his head and looked at Ratchet, sitting opposite him, his legs crossed and head bent.

"...What happened was...unforgivable." Ratchet was sure – because he'd 'felt' it as he explained, in a way – that Ickabar had truly loved the creature that caused his death. They had no way of knowing if the cragmite had cared for him to begin with...and yet...

"How could he do it? I thought..." Ratchet mumbled, trailing off –and Trisby, who had not said a word during the whole tale, cut in,

"You thought he cared about him? Maybe, in a way. But not in the way Ickabar thought." She moved forward, her voice empty and frank – she wasn't scornful of this tragedy, but she didn't show sympathy. Clank forced his own mind not to make a comment. Trisby folded her arms, frowning bluntly at Ratchet.

"Maybe even the runty cragmite didn't realize it. But Ickabar was – well, a pet by the sounds of it. Your lombax chums weren't as righteous, at least not when it came to the purple ball. They put the two 'wards' together, and then gave them this little mutant outcast to look after."

"I do not know if that was their intention –"Clank began, but Trisby scowled at him, cutting him off.

"Why, out of all the orphans a population could have, would they choose Ickabar to be the foster brother of the two 'adopted' kids? Simple – he obviously wasn't accepted and not considered normal, so they didn't treat him like a lombax. They gave Tachyon something to look after, like a puppy – maybe something they hoped would make him softer or more compassionate."

By her tone she clearly didn't hold this particular generation of lombaxes high. Ratchet scowled, "You're talkin' like they were some kind of cruelty experts."

"During the Great War they where heroes." Trisby said flatly, glaring at him, "I know that. First hand. But their self-righteousness and success got to their heads. They thought nothing could stop them, that their technology couldn't be matched, that one cragmite raised by them couldn't hurt – they became naive in their victory."

Ratchet stood up, scowling. Trisby had struck a chord, and Clank stood up in alarm, stepping between them - but he was ignored.

"That isn't what happened!"

"Isn't it?!" Trisby snapped, glowering up at the lombax, "They inherited a legacy of victory, praise and worship for saving the galaxy – for their ancestors saving the galaxy, that gave them jurisdiction over other people – other lives, like Tachyon, like that Lars guy, and like your pal Ickabar. I'm not saying Tachyon is right."

She hissed that part because she'd seen Ratchet bar his teeth – the words had clearly been seconds away from flying off his tongue. Trisby turned away, sighing,

"But the lombaxes weren't right, either. They thought they couldn't go wrong, and they did. They thought Ickabar, one of 'them' despite even them not accepting it, would soften the cragmite up. He wouldn't turn on us; he wouldn't hurt Ickabar to do it. But he did. Their plans didn't work."

Ratchet breathed in, and out. "...You act so know-it all. Well you don't try anything. They tried to do what was right, at least, most of them did – some treated Ickabar like dirt, I know that, but most of them wanted to do right – you, you just don't care about anyone or anything but yourself, and the only reason you're helping us is because if the galaxy goes, so do you."

Clank was lost. He didn't know what to say. Trisby's back was turned away from them, still, and she made no movement.

Then, she spoke, slowly and emptily, with just a hint of poison. "Oh, you're right, Ratchet, as you always think you are. I don't care about anyone. I don't care about Ickabar, or his son, or any of his friends whose names I can't even be bothered remembering." She turned her head to meet his glare, her brows raised, indifferent.

Then she scowled. "And I sure as hell don't care about you two. I am not your friend, or buddy; I'm someone you need to help you do this, so you'd better stop feeling sorry for yourself. Your past is horrible, so on and so on...but you don't even remember anything that happened. You lived your life ignorant of all your sorrows until what, five years ago? So suck it up and end this. And stop trying to figure out why evil people are evil." She glanced darkly at Clank at that point.

She strolled slowly back down the hall, shrugging, "Rant, wail and rage all you want, Ratchet, it won't change the facts. You need to wake up."

Ratchet watched her go, his fists clenched and shaking. Clank gave him a sorrowful look. "...Let us go, Ratchet...we can think of...these things once the galaxy is safe."

Ratchet nodded stiffly and began walking, too, not looking at him. Clank, feeling hopeless, stayed where he was for a few seconds. Sighing, he followed.

This tension would break. If they fought amongst themselves, what then...?

...

She was disturbed. Angry, frustrated. She had been patient, but things where changing. She'd tasted life again, being awake – truly awake, not controlling or hiding behind another to feel it.

She knew she needed to continue waiting, to reel freedom to her, slowly, but her opportunities where being threatened. Something was beginning to get in her way.

The orange lombax was interfering with everything. He'd found them. If she waited too long, everything would unwind – and if she waited too little, she'd scare her targets away...

There had to be another way to turn the tables...drifting, she moved through the darkness, pondering with sharpness she had not had for thousands of years.

...And then her thoughts landed on the cragmite ruler again. Perhaps...if they did return...she could find a way to turn it to her advantage after all.

...

"...Looks like an open yard ahead. Probably a landing dock." Trisby said loftily. They'd walked in utter silence, and Ratchet didn't bother answering even now. He looked past her, still feeling angry, and saw she was right – there was an open area ahead, but it wasn't the exit – but he could feel the cool air of the night drifting in. It was a relief, almost.

"...This door shouldn't be open..." Clank murmured, "If Tachyon wishes to box us in."

Ratchet groaned, "Great...probably means some minions up ahead." He felt half-glad; he could punch something after that banter with Trisby. He barely wanted to think of her stinging words, without feeling like he'd burst back into an argument.

Trisby held up a hand, and the two behind her stopped. She trotted out the door and peered around, her eyes narrowed. "...Nothing here, but it may change."

Ratchet pulled his wrench from his back and made his way forward; Clank hopping into his harness. He didn't even look at Trisby as he stood beside her, poking his head out the open door into the yard. Square, with very high walls – a landing dock, no way out into the jungle from here. There were other doors back into the interior of the station, though.

Ratchet began sprinting towards one, hoping to the heavens that nothing would happen – but the tell-tale sound of the door sliding shut behind them and the creaking of armour above made his hopes die.

Ratchet skidded to a halt and looked up. Drophids had appeared on the tops of the high walls around them, weapons tilted. They didn't fire. Ratchet turned, slowly, gritting his teeth. Surrounded.

Something heavy landed behind him with a slam, shaking the ground and nearby knocking him off his feet. Ratchet and Trisby spun around to find tachyon's throne looming over them, the cragmite wearing a scornful grin.

"I thought by now you would have tired of ambushes, but it seems you had no choice." The throne stepped towards them, slow and hulking – Ratchet pulled out a blaster and readied it.

"I'm more tired of you talking, actually." The lombax retorted. Tachyon's grin faded, but it didn't seem like it needed much to make his smile vanish. He leaned back a little in his throne.

"I do not like games, Lombax. If you wish for a death that is a little less painful, you will tell me what you where mumbling about during our last discussion."

So that's what had changed. Ratchet could have laughed, it was so ridiculous but so expected. Tachyon hated being lied to, not being in on the joke. Not knowing. This was exactly like him; he was stupid not to realize it. Ratchet had let on he knew something that Tachyon should. It must have been driving him mad.

Clank peered over his own shoulder at him, "Ratchet...?" He said, confused – but Trisby was eyeing Tachyon with an odd sort of interest.

Ratchet gave a bitter scowl. "I doubt it would change anything." He said, though he didn't know if it would, truly – he just wanted to see the cragmite cringe. And he did – Tachyon's eyes bulged like a pressed squeaky toy.

"You insolent runt. Though I should have expected it; Lombaxes where always so self-righteous – why else would you use the case of a lombax that had nothing to do with you as a reason to act high-and-mighty?" Tachyon spat.

"Ickabar was your brother." Ratchet said, doing his best not to yell, to keep himself under control, "How could you do it?"

Trisby sighed, heavily. Tachyon's temper flared, "I do not need to justify myself to you, as I said before! Now tell me what it is I 'do not know' – or I'll make sure you, and every last one of your pathetic friends dies as slowly and painfully as possible!"

He slammed the foot on the throne down directly in front of them. Ratchet clenched his fists. Tachyon continued relentlessly, leaning over the edge of his mini cockpit, "And should I ever find the dimensionator and what's left of your filthy race, I'll make sure that purple runt suffers the same, wherever he may be!"

Ratchet stared back at him with a stubborn glare. He didn't speak, but someone else did.

"...You don't know, do you?"

Trisby's voice was very level. All eyes fell on her. She eyed Tachyon, her scrutiny almost burning a hole in his head. "This whole time you didn't know?"

"Did not know what?" Tachyon spat. Trisby looked at Ratchet. The cragmite scowled at him, snarling, looking ready to lash out.

"...Ickabar's been dead for over twenty-five years." Ratchet said slowly, feeling empty as he said it. Tachyon's expression didn't change.

"...What are you talking about?"

"He died on the day you massacred Fastoon." Trisby called. "The day you killed all the others. He's been dead all this time."

"You're the reason he's dead." Ratchet said at last, feeling his voice grow thick. His father' image threatened to come back into his mind, but he forced those thoughts away. Thoughts of all of them that had died, his mother, Ickabar's wife and friends, Alister...all because of him.

He didn't stop looking right at Tachyon. The cragmite's face was stuck in that scornful glare, but it looked frozen, almost. He blinked once, registering what they had said at long last. "...That is impossible."

"I saw the grave." Ratchet's voice rose, then, and he threw up his hands a little, "It's there. Go look yourself! Ickabar is dead!"

Tachyon scowled at him again, his eyes blazing almost madly. "Shut up, you traitorous furball."

The throne moved, fast – faster than expected. Ratchet backed away, Trisby following – and he raised his blaster, sensing a fight. Tachyon blasted a laser at them and the dived separate ways, Trisby moving quickly to the walls, Ratchet beginning to fire at the arm aiming the blasts. His heart was pounding in his head. Tachyon lashed at him, the other arm of the throne clawing for him like a cat, almost clumsily – he was enraged, clumsy. Ratchet gritted his teeth and aimed for the joint in the arm.

A much bigger blast shook the ground. A bright, orange light bathed the yard and all parties looked skyward – a ship had appeared. It was bulky and grey – not Qwark, but not one of Tachyon's. Ratchet couldn't suppress a grin.

A rusty microphone rang out from the ship, "Hey there, rookies!"

Tachyon's head jerked around and he roared at the Drophids, "FIRE!"

A wire sprang out and grabbed Ratchet's arm, pulling him up like a speedy fishing rod. Another was thrown out to Trisby, and both where pulled upward and into the air by the ship, the drophids firing madly up at them – but not of the shots did any good.

The side-door on the ship slid open and Cronk reached out and seized both Ratchet's shoulder and Trisby herself, pulling them in. Clank chortled, still on the lombax's back.

"Good timing, as always."

Ratchet looked back over his shoulder as the doors of the ship began to close again. Tachyon was glaring up at him in insane fury, his body racked with heavy breaths. He scowled, coldly, as the doors closed, cutting off their sights.

...

Ratchet was very glad that Cronk and Zephyr where here. It meant he wasn't alone with Trisby. Clank was there, too, of course, but he always tried to be neutral in their arguments. Ratchet knew that they needed Trisby, but he couldn't help feeling bitterly angry at her.

"Soo, you find that book you where so keen on?" Zephyr chimed happily from the pilot seat. Ratchet shook his head.

"Nah, but we'll make it our next stop – with a ship we're bound to find the library faster."

"And get off this humid rock." Trisby muttered, her arms folded. She was sitting at the back, glaring absently out the window. Clank sighed a bit.

"Well I hope this darn book is worth it." Cronk called over his shoulder, "We almost got vaporised saving your rookie buts!"

"And who almost got their buts vaporised saving you from Tachyon?" Ratchet retorted, though he was grinning. Clank shared the smile as Cronk gave a stubborn grunt.

"Yeah, but we're more 'portant than some old book!"

"Have you heard for Tal?" Ratchet asked next, hoping to avoid an argument, however harmless. Zephyer chortled in return,

"Oh, she's fine, back with the rest of the guys holdin' up the resistance."

Ratchet pointedly ignored Trisby's previous opposition to calling her. "I'll try on her on the communicator and give her a rundown of what's been going on."

"Better you than us! She hates not being informed of things for more than a second!" Zephyr said. Ratchet shook his head and pulled out his communicator, hastily typing in the number. Talwyn's voice sounded from it moments later,

"Ratchet! Is that you?"

"Yeah – hey, Tal. Long time no seen." It felt as if it hadn't been five minutes since they last talked. Ratchet felt warmth in his chest at the realization – that time on Fastoon was finally getting out of his system, "How's everything going?"

"Not good. We're holding up, barely, but the morale's down – people keep running for it, as if that's going to help." She said, flustered. "We're losing numbers by the day, and we can't keep relying on defence robots for much longer."

"We're on the trail of what we're looking for. We'll be there to help soon." Ratchet said quickly, though he had no idea how he could promise that.

"How are you doing, Ratchet? I haven't heard from you in – well, a long while."

Ratchet felt his cheeks redden, glad for the fur hiding them. "Oh...uh, I'm fine..."

He couldn't ignore Trisby's scoff from the back of the ship.

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:icontomfromczechrepublic:
TomFromCzechRepublic Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Student Filmographer
Thanks for the awesome and well written stories on fanfic.com!
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:iconwhat-if-writer:
What-if-Writer Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2015
Thanks so much ^^
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:icontomfromczechrepublic:
TomFromCzechRepublic Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2015  Student Filmographer
You're welcome pal!
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Dracunnum Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for the fav ! :glomp:
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:iconsmeagolisme:
smeagolisme Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014  Professional General Artist
MERRY CHRISTMAS, TOO! :merry christmas: Merry christmas everybody Christmas Dance Christmas La Christmas- Deerling Christmas Carol Two :xmas: 
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What-if-Writer Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014
And to you :iconchristmastreeplz:
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:iconsmeagolisme:
smeagolisme Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014  Professional General Artist
Thanks SO MUCH for the watch!!! ^^
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:iconwhat-if-writer:
What-if-Writer Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014
Welcome ^^
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lombaxartist Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Happy  birthday!
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:iconwhat-if-writer:
What-if-Writer Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2014
Thanks ^^
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